A Mentor Who Believed

Andrea had been working as a financial analyst in New York for three years. With a master’s degree in government, working with finances was not exactly what she wanted to be doing. It was a steady job, but it didn’t match her long-term career goals, nor did it give her the fulfillment she wanted.

As a step to determining her future, she quit her job and began a new job search. Initially, she explored careers she felt would fit her needs, personality, and skillset. But as her personal job search was providing very little success, her mother referred her to the services at the New York Employment Resource Center.

At the employment center, Andrea encountered more help than she expected. She counseled one-on-one with the associate manager at the center, Martin Oestreicher.  As a mentor, Martin was on task, exact, and worked to understand Andrea’s employment needs. He helped her begin career planning and provided Andrea with market information on employment opportunities that matched her skills and background, while still providing professional fulfillment.

Andrea searched, networked, and interviewed. She exhibited her faith and prayed that doors would open to the right opportunity. She knew that if she strived to do everything she could and relied on God, He would take care of the rest.

 But as time passed with no success, she grew discouraged as she saw doors closing and her savings diminish. Employers were not calling back. Other people were hired instead of her.  She found temporary employment that she enjoyed, but it did not turn in to a full-time position. She wondered how she was going to provide for herself. 

Finally, Andrea heard of an opportunity from her mentor. Martin knew an employer who was looking for someone on her team, so Martin referred her to Andrea. There was no specific job description, skills, or requirements or even a specific position they wanted to fill—but they had heard of her skills and expertise and wanted to meet her.

When Andrea met with a staff member, they discussed the team’s major responsibilities and how Andrea could fit in the mix if they found her a position. In a subsequent interview with a higher level staff member, her potential employer asked Andrea how she would approach certain problems. Impressed by her answers, she asked Andrea, “How much would it take to get someone like you on my team?” A week later, she was offered a position.

Although initially Andrea felt the position would be overwhelming and not very compatible with her goals and capabilities, she discovered her new job was the perfect fit. Her employer was inspirational, goal-oriented, and easy to work with. Andrea knows the one-on-one job counseling and networking contacts from the employment center were key in helping her find good employment and that Martin’s mentoring had been especially helpful.

Andrea said, “The mentor relationship only works if the mentor believes in the mentored, and the mentored believes in the mentor.”

Now, she is happily working in a new position that she finds exciting, challenging and fulfilling. Andrea is grateful for the help she received from the Lord and the connections she made through Employment Resource Services.


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